President Joe Biden has asked several Trump appointees to resign from military advisory boards, triggering anger from conservatives who say the move breaks norms.
“Typically, military advisory boards by tradition have been exempted from undue partisan influence. On non-military boards, it is generally accepted that new presidential administrations do changes, but avoid doing it to any depth for military boards,” Republican Party of Virginia Chair Rich Anderson told The Virginia Star. “This recent development is a continuation of the Biden administration practice of politicizing any and every element of American life, in and out of government.”
Former Trump senior counselor Kellyanne Conway was asked to resign from the Board of Visitors to the United States Air Force Academy. “Three former Directors of Presidential Personnel inform me that this request is a break from presidential norms. It certainly seems petty and political, if not personal,” she wrote in a letter to Biden.
“I’m not resigning, but you should,” she concluded.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a Wednesday briefing, “The President’s objective is what any president’s objective is: is — was to ensure you have nominees and people serving on these boards who are qualified to serve on them and who are aligned with your values. And so, yes, that was an ask that was made.”
She said, “I will let others evaluate whether they think Kellyanne Conway and Sean Spicer and others were qualified or not political to serve on these boards.”
Congressman Mark Green (R-TN-07) said the decision to remove 18 appointees from the Service Academy boards violated the law in a Wednesday statement.
“Why is President Biden so brazenly breaking the law to fire 18 people duly appointed to the boards of our nation’s Service Academies? Is he afraid they’ll conduct actual oversight into the very important challenges each Academy faces? Is he afraid they will shine light on what is being taught at these academies—like Critical Race Theory? Now more than ever, our public institutions need oversight—not political engineering,” Green said.
“During my decade in the Virginia House of Delegates, I chaired the General Assembly Military and Veterans Caucus,” Anderson told The Star. “We went out of our way to deal across the aisle, and between both parties, in a non-partisan way on veterans and military issues. Sadly, the federal government could take a page from Virginia state government.”
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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Rich Anderson” by RPV Chair Rich Anderson. Background Photo “Joe Biden” by Matt Johnson CC BY 2.0.